Film actor Salman Khan on Friday pleaded “not guilty” in a case of alleged poaching of two blackbucks in 1998 near Jodhpur during the shooting of a movie, and claimed that only a forensic report saying that the endangered animal died of “natural cause” was true.
“The rest of the evidence [against me] is false,” Mr. Khan said in the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate in Jodhpur while recording his statement in the 18-year-old case accusing him of hunting the antelopes.
His co-stars in the film, Hum Saath Saath Hain , Saif Ali Khan, Neelam, Tabbu and Sonali Bendre also appeared in the court along with Mr. Khan.
The 51-year-old film actor was asked 65 questions by CJM Dalpat Singh Rajpurohit about the circumstances of the incident and his involvement in the alleged offence.
Mr. Khan replied in the negative to all the questions. He claimed that he was innocent and framed by the Forest Department, which had made up the story “for publicity”.
The next hearing in the case was fixed on February 15.
Mr. Khan was acquitted on January 18 in a criminal case accusing him of possessing and using weapons with an expired licence while hunting for endangered chinkaras and blackbucks at Kankani village and elsewhere near Jodhpur.